RealNews

Fingerprinting P2P Pirates

For months, the digital equivalent of a postal censor has been sorting through virtually all file-swapping traffic on the University of Wyoming’s network, quietly noting every trade of an Eminem song or “Friends” episode. Read more about file swapping The technology, provided by Los Gatos, Calif., company Audible Magic, isn’t yet blocking individual file trades. But that’s the next step. As the company begins testing its service with more universities, corporations and small Internet service providers during next few weeks and months, this peer-to-peer monitoring and blocking technology threatens to open the next front in the online piracy wars. With the capacity to look inside every bit of data that flows over a network–whether it’s part of a song being illegally traded or a personal e-mail–this new generation of antipiracy technology is sure to prove controversial. But some administrators at universities and corporations–deluged by peer-to-peer traffic that continues to overwhelm their networks–say they’re ready for this sweeping step. “I don’t really want to be looking that closely at what people are doing, and you’d probably just as soon not have me looking either,” said Brad Thomas, a network specialist at the University of Wyoming who is helping manage the Audible Magic project. “But it’s getting to be the only way to control our bandwidth.” Full Story

OODA Analyst

OODA Analyst

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